Weight Lifting Goals and the Mind

The mind and goalsetting

Weight lifting goals are as great or as endless as your imagination will allow; this is equally as large as the physical part of weight training itself.

Setting goals and achieving them, and knowing how to reward yourself and in what order, is almost completely missed in weight training today.

Chances of you making weight training a successful part of your lifestyle will depend more on the emphasis and importance of this topic than many realize!



Weight lifting goals and setting them is a subject that is little talked about in books, magazines or shown in many videos to any degree. unfortunately this leaves a large area of gray on the subject.

First it helps if you understand that the body and mind work together: or do they? They do on ordinary day-to-day tasks where not a lot of thought has to be put into our routine, as with most of us these are ordinarily reflexed based.

When it comes to an activity like weight training: the body is amazingly strong where sometimes the mind is not, while other times you head for the gym myself included, and feel great and energized, but... the body simply will-not produce the way we expect it to. 

The creative and imaginary aspect of your mind is the only thing that can define a purpose or goal! Without it, your weight lifting goals would be to loosely defined ultimatety increasing the chance of failure.


The Defining Line To Your Your Goal

Setting a goal

Drawing a straight line from where you are to where you want to go: is a should do-if you haven't

A big reason so many fail on the road to thier training goals is simple: most don’t plan, or have a defining line drawn from where they are, to where they want to go. So there is nothing to support the plan or no starting point to come back to.

Clearly defining your weight lifting goals and having these set in your mind, even wrote down and signed sets these actions into motion making you accountable to them...

Having a goal in 'general terms', is only an idea; an idea is only a starting point towards creating your goal!

Forming a weakly defined goal is really nothing more than a wish - and a wish is only a goal with no energy or conviction behind it. The clarity and conviction you put towards your goal will have a lot to do with your success.                         Make an effort to make your goals very clear!

                                  Planning + Effort = Results



Defining Your Interest And Desire!

Female goal setting

Let's start by defining something that interests you about weight training:

Whether it's strictly for reasons of self-esteem, self-confidence, maybe you want to increase strength or for weight-loss.

By taking this time to define what you want to change, whether it's a well-written phrase, image of a fit athlete or video that motivates you, It doesn't matter, find the desire that defines your purpose.

Often a realistic photograph is usually enough...

Now visualize in your mind, of drawing a straight line from where you are today, starting from the day you found the photo, to the person in the photo or image and imagine you are him or her already.

If you find this to difficult to imagine: take a photo of yourself and paste it on a large piece of paper at one end, at the other - paste your inspiring photo, put as much distance between them as you can...

Then draw a straight line between the two images, then pin-it in a place you look at everyday.

This represents the distance and unbreakable link to your weight lifting goal.



Setting Goals Through Different Stages Of Life

Fear (negative emotion) is the biggest thing that can destroy your goal setting ambitions. Practice everyday; to not allow fear to sneak into the cracks in your Armour and never let anyone tell you that you can't do this, give your weight lifting goals a chance and you will see that you can!

Setting goals in life

The negative impact of fear grips us all at different times and stages through out our lives, almost nothing else kills positive motivation like that of "fear"!

Stay in close contact with your goal always adds conviction and teaches us to follow through with each goal we set. Like anything: the more times you follow through with your goals, life gets easier... if you apply yourself there is NOTHING you can't achieve!

From small things to big ones, this becomes an essential survival and lifestyle building tool, you will use these to purchase a business, home, a car, etc.

The payment you make each month is the investment you make on the car you love, and the hard work in weight training will be the payment for the greatest investment you'll make in your life... the one in Yourself!


Self-Discipline and Defining Goals

Self-discipline and goals

Self-discipline is manifested by being repetitive. By having your purpose firmly in mind, you won’t have to worry about things like should I weight train today, or do I have time?

Work with yourself and try not to have lots of fatty foods or pastries in your fridge, don't be tempted by these foods, try not to go shopping on an empty stomach, set a time to work out regularly each week and be consistent with this, repetition is the road to your goal!

Each time you replace fear or self-doubt with a workout, or positive ideas instead of negative ones and achieve them. Your mind will have no choice but to change over time and where the mind goes, so does body.

By continuously practicing better habits a new dicovery in yourself will emerge and you'll begin to crave these new habits.


Time-Based Weight Lifting Goals And Rewards

Time-based goals

Time-based weightlifting goals, are simply another way of measuring progress by using time. Perhaps to start with you’re interested in training for weight loss or strength gains or both, in which case you can set a time-frame for this achievement. 

let's say the time-frame you choose is between 60 and 90 days, and the goal is to lose 10 to 15 pounds of body fat and gain 3 pounds of muscle.This would be an illustration of a time-based goal.

If your new to weight training, work at small goals to achieve the big ones, be realistic towards your fitness level; this is achieved much easier by taking this in smaller bites. For beginners setting goals, especially; time-frame-based goals, is a manageable place to start.

As time passes and you advance you can begin making some of these goals physic based. As you begin to understand how to make these achievements in your physic, you can now add this to your list of strategies towards the direction of your weight lifting goals. (more on this further down)

Time based goals when your first starting could go something like this...

You set a time; say 8 to 10 weeks from your first work out, you can then enter this in your weight training log/diary, calendar or next to your mirror. This signifies that you're planning and defining your goal.

Now think of a reward. This should be something small something that usually pops in to your head first thing, perhaps something you miss a lot; maybe, treating yourself to meal, at a restaurant of your choice.

Or maybe see a great action or adventure flick that’s coming out around this time and enjoy a bag of popcorn.

This may seem funny, but this solidifies two things.

  • The simple fact that you achieved a small goal.
  • Also you’re old habits of fun and pleasure are not gone, you are simply putting new ones in place slowly, that helps keep you traveling along your goal defining line.

Now these are merely illustrations for you, use your imagination, don’t get carried away with this, these are only small rewards to build confidence in goal setting. Don’t go get a loan for a Corvette at this point.


 Strength-Based Weight Lifting Goals And Rewards

Strength-based goals

Another way to approach weight lifting goals is: with strength based rewards.

E.g., if you can bench press 100 pounds, or squat with 100 pounds in strict form for ten reps. and want to increase your strength, become more progressive with your lifts add resistance every-few workouts to increase lower body strength.

Once you get to 150 pounds and can perform 10 reps with good form, is a 50% increase in strength and utimately should be rewarded!

Just be sure to be honest with yourself here or you only undermine your own efforts. The poundage's and repetitions mentioned are only examples; just be sure to set forth a good, reasonable effort to ensure goal-related achievement results are met.

Be honest with yourself: apply a fair reward for how hard you've worked at achieving your new strength increases. Rewards can range from a new iPod or cell phone to a new tattoo or clothing, the sky's the limit.

                 Rewards solidify sucsses to achievement.


Sparking Desire Towards Your Weight Lifting Goals

Sparking your desire to help you get closer to your goals can be done in more ways than can be listed; here are a few examples to help with ideas:

Let’s say this coming summer, maybe it’s three or four months away; maybe there's a wedding to a close friend or family member and this person has meant a lot to you over the years.

You could use weight training and a better diet to put yourself into better physical condition to impress this friend or person. Making this an outward expression of how you feel about yourself and the person you would like most to impress.

Weight training  is only the vehicle you use to get you from the desire of your goal, to achieving it.

Just be sure to give yourself enough time to get ready this should help you define clearly how well you’re doing, and how you want to look in three or four months from now - to when you arrive at the date you’ve given yourself.

You can use this same approach again: maybe it's a business trip, trade convention, job interview or your showing new products to potential clients or buyers. The point here is: no matter who you stand in front of, the more confident you appear, the more others will notice and respect you.

A young woman was asking me a year ago; how can I get in shape for my graduation? How can I look better, how can I feel stronger and outwardly project this to everyone at my graduation?

This young lady was good-looking to begin with, but wanted to look better, better than she ever had.

I simply explained to her some of the tips and techniques for getting into better shape and using her graduation as the vehicle for her driving force to arrive at her goal on time...

She did... and she projected exactly what she wanted... and that girl was my daughter.

No one is better than the next, this is not an exclusive right, Define your purpose set a goal and a time to completion. 

Your goals and rewards are both parts of each otherWork with yourself and you may verywell find things about your character you never knew, or believed were there!



Physic Based Rewards

Physique-based goals

Physic based rewards come harder in weight lifting goals; despite what the magazines or others might tell you, but...

they do come: the good news here especially for beginners is; your best gains in strength and muscle growth will come in the first 6 to 8 month period.

You will have to monitor this in different ways, one is with photos, this should be done with a decent camera that can show you some detail.

You can also use a cloth sewing or measuring tape to take your measurements.

Try to be honest with yourself it's easy to cheat, even unintentionally...

You should only pull the tape until there are no noticeable wrinkles, 'the tape should lay on your skin but not be pulled into it' there should be no air pockets that can be seen except where it is obvious over a muscle or bone.

Measure all the specific groups such as arms legs chest etc. then do a second measurement and take those and compare them to the first set. If there is a difference, either split the difference, or re-measure that muscle group again.

Record the measurements for each muscle group you just took. Once you have recorded all of these, save them in a safe place.

If you are a little more technically-based towards your life and fitness, feel free to copy these to a spread sheet and monitor them this way if you like. Just make sure that you back it up or print off copies as you progress.


How To Reward And At What Time Frames

When the hard work and discipline of weight training begins to show, so will your confidence and self-esteem.

All of a sudden those obstacles on your line that you drew, slowly begin to disappear... people in general, your friends, family and coworkers will begin to view and treat you differently.

For the first year to two years I would suggest rewarding should be done if you're consistent almost quarterly throughout the year. This of course is only a suggestion, you set yours up how you want.

This seems to be 'the Goldilocks' of rewarding, if you get it too often you lose interest and don't stay hungry towards your goal. If they're too far apart, it becomes too hard to reach. Make it achievable, but make yourself have to work for it e.g., don't be afraid to work hard for what you want the most.

This should be repeated again at or around the one year period as this is significant...

You can either repeat some of the original rewards, or maybe this time you are now going to buy that IPOD on sale, to listen to the music at the gym.

Again; I encourage you to use your imagination here on the reward system... 

Rewards are only given as a result of your hard dedicated work. Believe me a long time ago, including today I do these same things, it's amazing how powerful this can be, driving you towards your long term weight lifting goal.

E.g., in your first year you could reward yourself at the 5 to 6 month range. This could be something like a new work out shirt, or t-shirt, or running shoes etc. to complement your growing physic - by this time you may have started to look a lot different.

These are only examples, use your imagination and make sure to reward yourself for your achievements with something that’s truly rewarding to you.


Eliminating And Managing Obstacles

Many people fail with this one, just like the New Year’s resolutions, that so many people will make each New Year. But ultimately fail in their goals; not realizing the importance, of taking it in small bites.

Plan the work, then work the plan...

especially in weight training. I have often witnessed some people actually create more obstacles for themselves than they eliminate.


Obstacles towards goals

The reality of life can be very different than the straight line we imagine towards our goals.

Reality has obstacles. Some are small while others are large by comparison, planning and being disciplined will not eliminate all of these... But it will eliminate a lot of them.

As mentioned: your sidewalk is your foundation, it will curve, turn, have cracks and even have places where it seems like it ends. Your goals in weight training are the same as anything else.

Take them a step and one day at a time, the obstacles will always be there, the only way they can get in your way or end your hopes and dreams - is if you let them!


Know Who You Are And What You Want!

   In Summary:

Don’t be afraid to demand a lot from your body, just be sure you always give back with rest, proper nutrition  and rewards for your achievements. 

Rewards and goals

Use your imaginations creativity to achieve the most important thing in your workouts... Plan your Goals with rewards to be achieved, and Have fun! 

Once you’ve begun to achieve this, you are now beginning to understand goal setting.

Find the place within yourself, that sparks your desire, if your desire is sparked enough it will light the flame under something even greater... your passion.

Burning passion, creates an enormous wave of energy from a source deep within.

This new discovery that burns within all of us is where hopes and dreams of building a better you, become your reality!

It isn't where your "starting out - and it isn't where you're going to finish" that's significant, the defintion of weight lifting goals is: it's, the journey between the two that's the most fun and builds the most character. DWT

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